Johnson brace stuns leaders
After last week’s disappointing derby result, Wrington Reserves shuffled their pack and a new look formation produced a stunning all round display to match the league leaders and pull off a come back win. Aided by the return of Matt Lenny, Chris Holland and Nick Curtis, Wrington had options all over the field and started brightly. Their determination to play good football on a difficult pitch was eventually rewarded when good inter passing between Holland and Curtis put Portishead under pressure. The clearance fell to Jake Betts who produced a beautifully threaded ball for Johnson to run on to and rifle into the top corner. The home side responded with several dangerous crosses and with Olly O Hare and Calum Eastwood a constant threat this young talented side grew into the game. Wrington were now under pressure and O’Hare finally latched onto a long ball and finished expertly.
With Joe Moore and John Flynn battling tirelessly in midfield the rest of the half was an even end to end game but it took a fine penalty save from James Williams to keep things level . The visitors were therefore unlucky to find themselves behind just on the stroke of half time when Eastwood finally managed to shake off Flynn who rather ‘dived in’ giving him the time to slot past the on rushing Williams.
Having struck such a psychological blow, Portishead expected to take control of the second half but with Andy Lilly, Dean Rix and Lenny holding firm, Johnson full of running and Marshall his usual combatitive self , Wrington more than held their own. A typical run from Holland again pressurised the home defence and when the ball broke to Johnson he made no mistake for his second to level the match. Tom Fairhurstreplaced the injured Matt Lenny but Curtis slotted into defence expertly and the visitors continued to frustrate the home side. Marshall’s header then released Johnson again and his perfect cross fell to Holland but his shot was somehow cleared only for Fairhurst to retrieve and Holland gratefully accepted his second chance to bundle home the cross.
It now took a whole team effort, throwing themselves into every block and tackle and several good saves from Williams to keep Portishead at bay but eventually Wrington ran out deserved winners. Without doubt this was Wringtons’ best performance of the season and with seven games remaining, all at home, it will be interesting to see how far they can push up the table.
Man Of Match: Tom Johnson